Thai officer arrested for threatening popular singer with gun

Thai officer arrested for threatening popular singer with gun
PHOTO: The Star/Asia News Network

BANGKOK - A Royal Thai Airforce (RTA) officer is now in military detention pending trial over allegedly threatening famous singer Pongsit "Pu" Kampee with a pistol during a concert in Amnat Charoen's Muang district last Wednesday night.

Flight Sergeant First Class Phobtrai Nartsuwan, 48, will be tried at a military court for a firearms offence, in line with the Defence Ministry regulations.

Pongsit's lawyer, Kriengsak Kangwanwong, had told police on Saturday night that the singer didn't wish to press criminal charges against the officer, said the case's police investigator Pol Captain Jen Wisetram on Sunday.

The lawyer said Pongsit understood that Phobtrai had no ill intention, although he wielded a handgun during the concert, and so did not wish to press criminal charges.

The incident was caught on video, with the clip going viral, and resulting in the RTA launching a disciplinary probe against Phobtrai.

Phobtrai reportedly was drunk and upset that his gesture to shake hands with his singing idol was declined.

The star was singing and playing guitar at the time Phobtrai extended his hand.

Then Phobtrai reportedly pulled out his gun and pointed it at the singer, who paused and took a step back for a few seconds.

As security guards moved to apprehend the military man, Pongsit allegedly grabbed his pistol, before being whisked out of the pub.

Guards then alerted police. Police initially charged the soldier for carrying a firearm in a public place.

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